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Wednesday, April 10, 2013

The End of the Rope

Homework.  Lecture notes.  Paper due.  Missing Wallace.  Running back and forth from town. A messy house. 

Time flying by as I fill it with more, more, more, to do.  Clinical paperwork to grade.  A study guide to type up.  Another paper to write.  More helping Caleb with homework that he doesn't want to do. 

If you've read this blog at all you know that sometimes my to do list gives me heart palpitations.  I live in a constant state of hurry up and go and do, do, do... and my chaos is sometimes out of control.

I'm learning, though, to take deep breaths and focus on that which is necessary and that which is good and let go of what isn't.  Part of that life lesson is what brought me to Stressed Less Living, by Tracey Miles. I'm reading it as a part of a Bible study through Melissa Taylor's Online Bible Study, and just reading the first chapter let me know that it's a book we could all use.

See, when I'm stressed, I tend to start thinking I need to do something, which only adds to my stress.  This book focuses on Who can do something about it... and most of the time, there is no "I" in it, apart from the I AM... You got it...God.

Chapter one spoke to me in several ways, and I could probably fill pages up.  The one quote that really stuck out to me, though, talked about coming to the end of our rope.  I'm nowhere near there right now, but I have been before. One of my favorite quotes for final exam time is, "When you're at the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on." In fact, I recently sent that in an email to Wallace, who does not do well with lack of sleep.  =) So this quote hit me in the gut, "Sometimes, God allows us to get to the very end of our rope, barely hanging on by one little thread, before He reaches down and pulls us up with one mighty swoop."  We dangle there, exhausted.  We know we've come as far as we can... and we figure out that He has to be the one doing the work.  We can't pull ourselves up to safety... It has to be Him.  Matthew 5:3 from The Message Translation sums it up really well, "You're blessed when you're at the end of your rope. With less of you, there is more of God and his rule."

You may be like me, at the end of a semester staring at several papers left to write and exams to admininster and a kiddo with summer break fever even though he still has a month of school left.  You may be dangling at the end of a broken marriage where deceit and betrayal have left you wondering how you even hung on this long to begin with. Maybe you're hanging there at the end of some terminal disease or a chronic health problem or financial struggles. 

Our arms are shaky and feel like they are about to come out of socket.  We're probably breathing hard from the exertion of hanging on. There's those palpitations that come, and that anxiety that looms dark.  We're exhausted and frustrated and just know we are about to come crashing down...

And then there's God.  Our safety net.  He's there to catch us, to swoop down with His loving arms and bring us to a place of safety and rest.  He's dependable when others aren't.  He has the answers when we can't even see the whole question. And He's not going to just leave us hanging...

Thank You, Lord, that You're there. Help us depend on You, and remember that in our weakness, You are strong... and Your grace is sufficient.

3 comments:

  1. Love this Lauren!! Your words are always so easy to read, so honest and heartfelt! I loved this "He has the answers when we can't even see the whole question." True faith is putting hope in the things unseen and that applies to all aspects of our lives. Stepping back and realizing that God sees the whole picture and works all things for the good of those that love Him is hard to do sometimes. But He is faithful <3 and He yearns for us to be desperate for Him. Praying a double portion of time and peace for you Ms Lauren!

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  2. This all sounds so familiar to me. I love the line, "I'm learning, though, to take deep breaths and focus on that which is necessary and that which is good and let go of what isn't." This is something that I need to do more often. As a mother of two busy teens my schedule is constantly loaded with work duties, as well as "child" events. Sometimes it is so easy to miss the REALLY important things: those little everyday life moments that make being a mother so special. I think I need to relax and stop stressing so much about work and do more LIVING.

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  3. Lauren you sound like me and my to-do list. I to am trying to learn to focus on what is necessary and good. I am learning it is more important to jump up and go with my son and DIL or my hubby on the spur and leave things undone. Life is precious and we have to do those things that make memories and are important. Loved your blog. Debbie W. (OBS Group Leader)

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